Sunday, November 12, 2006

When Losing Is Winning

To those who have won before, another victory means very little -- when individual (societal) growth and improvement is the larger objective -- and a lot of people lose sight of that, thinking that every battle is the war, or at least the final battle.

Sometimes one loses a few battles to win the larger objective, and for most people, that should be persistent growth and improvement throughout life. Without losing, it is seldom possible to jump on up to the next level -- because it requires that kind of extraordinary challenge and input of energy to make that quantum leap.

So it is said by masters of the art of anything, that “in order to lose one’s fears (limits), one has to risk them -- and in risking them, all one loses are those fears.” And then one can go beyond.

The greatest curse, is to be rewarded for all the wrong things -- because that keeps one trapped doing all those things that aren’t important, but which everybody else rewards them for. The greatest reward is what one can only give themselves.

That is the dilemma of the artist -- that nobody can appreciate their art any more than they themselves do -- but also, they may be the only person who can, at first. Then once the artist manifests that reality, others can come around to appreciating it in time -- but that never happens just with the vague wishful thinking of something different, which is just the opposite, the anti-, which is the same thing in a modified form.

Something different, is something wholly different -- and not just more of the same. The mantra of a previous age was, “More is Better.” In this age, we recognize that “Better is Different,” and not just “More.”

That’s the difference between the New Mind and the Old Mind -- no matter how much they try to convince us they are the “leaders” in the community. They now have to manifest that function -- and not just assume the roles, and then nobody will pay them any mind until the next election.

Most importantly, every individual will judge for themselves whether they are successful or not -- and nobody will do that for them, at least nobody, who has better things to do than live through other people’s lives. That is the fundamental change Old Media still doesn’t get, and probably cannot -- because it was the world of the mass, generalized experience, rather than the highly individuated ones that is the new reality, not of everyone yet, but of those pioneering those possibilities that eventually become the dominant paradigm of life in every society.

So the new gets beaten back until finally, people wonder why they hadn’t thought of it sooner, and those who were the fiercest defenders of the old status quo, then claim that they invented the idea.

5 Comments:

At November 12, 2006 11:54 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

When Winning Is Losing:

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/washingtondc/la-na-dems12nov12,0,4533842.story?track=mostviewed-homepage

Liberal groups expect postelection results
Activists who helped Democrats secure Congress make clear they intend to get their reward.


By Peter Wallsten and Janet Hook, Times Staff Writers
November 12, 2006

WASHINGTON — After toppling the long-dominant Republicans in a hard-fought election, the Democratic Party's incoming congressional leaders have immediately found themselves in another difficult struggle — with their own supporters.

Some of the very activists who helped propel the Democrats to a majority in the House and Senate last week are claiming credit for the victories and demanding what they consider their due: a set of ambitious — and politically provocative — actions on gun control, abortion, national security and other issues that party leaders fear could alienate moderate voters and leave Democrats vulnerable to GOP attacks as big spenders or soft on terrorism.

The conflict underscores the challenge facing the Democrats in line to lead Congress — Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco in the House and Harry Reid of Nevada in the Senate. Each has pledged in recent days to "govern from the center," after a campaign in which anger over the Iraq war and GOP scandals helped their party attract some unusually conservative candidates and a large share of independent voters.

Turning off those new voters could undermine Democrats' hopes of solidifying their new majorities and taking the White House in 2008. But to the leaders of interest groups who are core supporters of the Democratic Party, and who had been barred under Republican rule from the inner sanctums of power, the new Congress means a time for action, not compromise.

Lobbyists for the American Civil Liberties Union, for example, are all but counting on Democrats to repeal the most controversial provisions of the Patriot Act, the anti-terrorist law pushed by the White House that some critics call unconstitutional. They also want to end President Bush's domestic wiretapping program.

"We are not going to let them off the hook," said Caroline Fredrickson, the ACLU's legislative director, of the newly empowered Democratic leaders in Congress.

"We will hold their feet to the fire and use all the tools we can to mobilize our members."

Similar vows are coming from lobbyists for abortion rights, who want to expand family-planning options for poor women and scale back Bush's focus on abstinence education, and from gun-control advocates, who hope to revive a lapsed ban on assault weapons. Labor unions, a core Democratic constituency, are demanding universal healthcare and laws discouraging corporations from seeking inexpensive labor overseas.

"It's been kind of a drought for 12 years, and there is some pent-up energy," said Bill Samuel, legislative director for the AFL-CIO, the labor federation that has long been a Democratic Party stalwart and spent millions of dollars on get-out-the-vote activities.

Several of the labor movement's less-controversial goals, such as raising the minimum wage and allowing Medicare to seek discounts on drug prices, are found both in the AFL-CIO's brochures and on a Democratic leadership wish list designed to appeal across ideological lines.

But labor officials said they expected Pelosi, Reid and others to go further.

The day after the election, labor leaders declared a mandate for their causes and called on the new Congress to immediately reverse anti-union policies enacted by the Bush administration and promote affordable healthcare "for all."

"We're realistic about the congressional timetable, but we have our own view about why people went to the polls," said Samuel. "We think it had to do with their unhappiness with Republican inaction on the economy…. They're expecting Congress to tackle these issues, not play short ball."

Eli Pariser, executive director of the political action committee associated with the liberal activist group MoveOn.org, warned that Democratic leaders would be ill-advised to ignore the party's base.

"A huge number of people were involved in putting them over the top," Pariser said. "There's a huge group of people engaged and energized and ready to support Pelosi and company when they boldly lead — and to hold them to account if they stray."

Pressure on Democrats is especially acute to redirect U.S. policy in Iraq. Many Democrats say the issue was the most important one driving the party's victory.

Democratic lawmakers have not unified behind a single Iraq policy. If they could find common ground with Bush on a continued troop presence, they might fend off GOP efforts to label them as weak on national security — but they would probably infuriate a growing antiwar movement that helped propel the party back into power.

"American voters have done their job; now it's time for Congress to do theirs," said former Rep. Tom Andrews (D-Maine), national director of the antiwar group Win Without War. "The message couldn't be clearer. It's time to start the orderly withdrawal of American troops from Iraq. Our eyes are on the new Congress."

Other interest groups are pointing to Tuesday's results as vindication of their particular causes, and as proof that Democrats should embrace their issues rather than shun them as too liberal.

Planned Parenthood Federation of America, which advocates abortion rights, pointed to victories by like-minded candidates in conservative states and a rejection by South Dakota voters of an abortion ban. The result, the group says, should be that Democrats view their causes as mainstream, rather than part of a liberal agenda, and should devote more money to contraception and other family-planning options opposed by religious conservatives and scaled back by the administration.

"I honestly believe there was no bigger winner in this election than Planned Parenthood Action Fund and women's health," said Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, referring to the group's political arm.

At the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, the leading gun-control advocacy group, President Paul Helmke has high hopes for the assault weapons ban — and he can list races where candidates backed by his group defeated those supported by the National Rifle Assn.

But Helmke, a former Republican mayor of Fort Wayne, Ind., acknowledged that his challenge was to convince Democrats that his cause was not "radioactive." Many Democratic strategists have come to believe that supporting gun-control laws alienates rural voters and many independents.

"Guns are a tricky issue," Helmke said. "But the elections show there's nothing to be afraid of."

Still, the issues of abortion and guns underscore the tough decisions facing Reid and Pelosi as they try to please the party's core supporters while appealing to centrist voters.

The party's winning formula this year, after all, required candidacies from cultural conservatives such as Rep.-elect Heath Shuler in western North Carolina and Sens.-elect Jon Tester in Montana and Jim Webb in Virginia.

A preview of the tussle that awaits Reid and Pelosi has been playing out on the Internet since election day, with liberal bloggers decrying party centrists as out of touch with the Democratic majority. The complaints have been serious enough to draw Reid's attention, prompting him to host a conference call after the election with more than a dozen of the country's most prominent liberal bloggers.

Reid himself has learned to navigate these issues in order to win election in largely rural Nevada. He calls himself pro-gun and, according to a spokesman, opposes abortion except in cases of rape and incest and when the woman's life is endangered.

In the Senate, matters are further complicated by the fact that at least five Democrats — nearly 10% of the caucus — are considering presidential bids in which they may need to win the liberal base to gain the nomination but then campaign to the center in a general election.

Republicans have already said they intend to take back power in 2008 by portraying Democrats as big-government tax raisers who would rather safeguard civil liberties than interrogate terrorists.

Conservatives, though splintered over Iraq, immigration and other issues, had succeeded in keeping power since 1994 in part by forging a coalition built on compromise and shared goals — a practice that Democrats have yet to perfect.

Senior Democrats say they will figure out a way to bridge the divide.

"Tension is inherent in politics, and maybe a little bit of tension is good," said Reid spokesman Jim Manley. "But on the core, fundamental issues, everyone's in line."

Wary that the interest groups' demands may turn off the centrist voters who put them in the majority, some Democratic pragmatists are preparing to press for greater independence.

Sen. Charles E. Schumer of New York, chairman of the committee that designed the party's Senate campaign strategy, is publishing a book in January that is expected to lay out a plan for long-term Democratic dominance. He is expected to embrace a philosophy somewhere between the Democrats' old New Deal reliance on government and conservatives' outright disdain for government.

Schumer signaled as much after the election when he called on the party to "push aside the special interests and always keep our eye on the average American family."

peter.wallsten@latimes.com
janet.hook@latimes.com

 
At November 13, 2006 10:30 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

If I Had To Do It Over Again

On Tuesday, November 14, 2006, at 7:00 PM, Understanding Conditioning, The Video, will be rebroadcast on Olelo (Hawaii) Channel 49. People who have seen it before ask if it is a new video -- even though they note that it seems to be a different video each time. That’s because even though the video has remained the same, they’ve changed -- which is the whole objective of understanding conditioning.

That is not necessarily the case with every instructional video -- and why I thought it was necessary to do it once. Every few years, my videographer and I view it again, and are impressed with its timeless freshness -- and think we can’t improve on that; we have to do something else.

The key was that the critical focus of exercise, movement, conditioning -- was the extremities rather than the heart, which is an autonomic (automatic) function, and what we really needed to address was the voluntary muscles that were not getting the proper stimulation to maintain optimal health and fitness. That is a function not of effort but of understanding -- and once one had the proper understanding of those functions, being in shape and condition, was virtually automatic. But not having that critical understanding, no amount of effort could be productive.

The conventional wisdom (sayings) is that anything is better than nothing -- when in fact, efforts can be destructive and counterproductive -- which most previously designed exercises were, causing injuries and discouraging people from the proper movements. Those are not taught -- but the damaging ones are -- as physical education (conditioning) of the past, which has simply taken on more fancy names and titles since, while their pat explanations and justifications have been challenged and found to be no coherent understanding at all, but merely belief systems.

The alternative is self-evident truth -- which is why I presented this understanding “live,” as a discussion exercise. As one is understanding intellectually, the movements test and verify that understanding -- for each individual, and that convergence, is the integration of mind and body.

The fusion of the mind and body is a very powerful force -- that makes most task easy, when being distracted in ten different preoccupations, makes even the simplest tasks difficult and catastrophic. People doing the latter, will often justify their poor results in pointing out that they were distracted by doing ten things at once -- rather than accepting the understanding that it is not wise to do ten things at once but one thing at a time, with all one’s faculties focused on that task, and done in that manner, is quickly done and one can move on to the next.

If not, one has the same old problems throughout life -- limiting them, restricting their choices, narrowing their options -- until finally, there are no choices. Yet many people think that a “healthy” life is to eliminate their choices -- rather than recognize all the possibilities.

http://thinkingdifferently.blogspot.com/

 
At November 14, 2006 9:07 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

UNDERSTANDING CONDITIONING: Tuesday, November 14, 2006, 7 PM, Olelo Channel 49 (FOCUS), Hawaii

Now that the elections are over, I can resume my focus on that body of work I am largely known for -- as the premier writer/speaker on exercise and conditioning. I was raised in a “tradition” of exercise -- and so have always observed and studied it before I was aware of what I was doing -- but that has been an integral part of me, since it was my essential exposure and practice in the formative years.

Throughout my life, being around world champion athletes has just been a natural thing, and I’ve talked to more creators of their own disciplines, than most people realize is possible. But the great teachers must first be great students, and not just be teachers -- or students. Integral to any practice is that one eventually becomes their own greatest teacher.

These are the valuable lessons of the many disciplines before they became “professionalized,” which means done mostly for money, status and power. If there is no money, many are no longer interested; those who remain interested, whether there is money in it or not, are the great teachers and students of that field. Those are the people who do what they do because that is who/what they are, and so their very being is their doing. The most familiar of such people are the artists, and other creative types; many are entrepreneurs, creating their own way in life.

Yet the dominant types in contemporary society tend to be the institutional or organizational person -- who finds a place they can fit in and stays in it unless there is an extraordinary event that propels them on to some other path. They will rarely choose their own destiny -- and even think that there is something wrong and foolish about those who do. They are the many bureaucratic personalities -- for which money, status, and power, if they reach the top of the seniority pyramid, is the only reality.

To such people, any new or different idea is regarded as “wrong,” because they haven’t heard it before, and view their role in society as being to defend the status quo -- until they get orders to do otherwise.

Obviously, the most receptive people to new information are the creative types -- who can appreciate the better in the new and different, rather than reject it reflexively. These people are invariably the leaders in any society -- whether they have designations as such. Those who know, can recognize that in the others of whatever field they are the “masters” of -- because they inquire and challenge the very authority of what is known, familiar and established -- with greater confidence than the defenders of the old status quo can muster.

In the field of exercise, I placed the emphasis of importance at the extremities rather than the heart because it seemed to be the only way to exercise all the muscles as though they were one large, integrated muscle. But the further importance of this, which I did not make the central teaching in the video, is that the need and value of exercise is not in making the heart work harder and faster to pump blood (fluids) out to the extremities, but in creating at the extremities, a pumping effect back towards the heart -- because that is the weakness and breakdown in the circulatory system since sedentary lifestyles produce so few of these alternating contractions/relaxations -- that pump the fluids in the tissues back to the heart, thus resulting in the bloated look of people considered to be fat, disabled and diseased.

Most people are not aware of the movements possible at the extremities of the hands, feet and head and Understanding Conditioning, teaches that full articulation and possibility most have not seen before, or if they have, have not realized the essential importance of.

http://hawaiirepublican.blogspot.com/

 
At November 14, 2006 9:25 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

With the previous two postings to my other more established blogs, Thinking Differntly and Thinking Hawaii, I'm resuming my leadership roles in the fields of my own creation -- while still planning to maintain a presence as Republicn Mike Hu, as inspired to.

My internationally famous blog is Thinking Differently in which I'm a leading edge thinker in many fields I myself may not be consciously aware of that distinction. But I am a leading thinker in the succession of the works of Krishnamurti, Maslow and Ayn Rand -- most notably.

They were the most powerful and influential thinkers of the 20th century -- whose ideas will obviously reach a greater flowering in the 21st century, as the proponents of a larger than life than we ever envisioned previously.

That is the natural trend, evolution and progress of humanity -- beyond all the petty squabbles we see so familiarly on the mainstream media. That's not all of life, and that is certainly not the best of life.

Occasionally there's a breakthrough -- like Understanding Conditioning.

 
At November 14, 2006 9:47 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

As I was out campaigning, I got to reintroduce myself to a lot of people I grew up with, who wondered, "Whatever happened to Mike Hu?" And then upon meeting these people, I got to ask, "Whatever happened to everybody else?"

What was shocking was learning of so many that had already passed on in life.

I was particularly proud of hearing, "You haven't changed a bit since high school."

 

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